The perfect vacation should balance relaxation, rejuvenation, adventure, and exploration (in our humble opinion, that is). Much like when searching for the perfect gemstone, it’s not difficult to find stones with some desirable qualities but lacking in others — these subpar stones are the travel equivalent of overcrowded beaches and popular European cities overflowing with tourists during peak season. While they all have redeemable qualities, we want nothing short of the best. At Anueva, we tirelessly search for the most exquisite and unique gemstones and vacation spots alike. There’s a reason why the most magical and lesser-known locations are called “hidden gems.” Perfectly tucked away by nature, here are some of the most obscure travel places you should add to your bucket list.
Torres del Paine, Chile
For our first spot, we must travel to the far south of Chile to the Magallanes region. Nestled within Chilean Patagonian, Torres del Paine National Park offers some truly otherworldly sites. While the wonders of Patagonia are undoubtedly something you’ve heard about or seen before, there’s plenty of awe left to discover in this stunning national park. Torres del Paine National Park is a protected area, making it an ideal hiking destination for sustainably-conscious travelers. Dense with gleaming glaciers and mirror-clear, bright turquoise lakes, the mammoth granite massifs are eager to be explored by adventurous hikers. Torres del Paine will deliver once-in-a-lifetime sights and experiences. If you’re an avid and more experienced traveler, this is one spot you must explore!
Havasupai Falls, Arizona, USA
As a Seattle-based business, we are guilty of once believing that one must travel to faraway places to witness something extraordinary. (Depending on where you live, that may still be true for this one!) The US is a treasure map — full of enchanting locations — waiting to be discovered. This particular treasure takes us deep within the Grand Canyon. Hidden amongst the Havasupai Indian reservation in the Grand Canyon lies an oasis unlike any other. Two contrasting climates collide to create one breathtaking paradise. The arid, orange cliffs of the Havasu Canyon are brought to life by the tropical aqua waters that cascade down. This isolated part-desert, part-tropic paradise won’t disappoint.
Tip: Opening Day starts on February 1st, and most reservations sell out within the first few hours! Add this trip to your bucket list, and be sure to snag a visit as soon as you can!
If you’re on a mission to scope out some of the most beautiful beaches in the world (and even if you’re not), you absolutely owe this place a visit. Krabi, Thailand, is home to some of the most spectacular sunsets in the world. A rare phenomenon known as intercloud lightning, where lightning jumps from one cloud to another, can often be spotted here. Not only will the crystal-clear and brightly-colored turquoise waters lure you in, but the area is also a haven for adventure lovers. Take your pick and set off to explore the hot springs, wildlife sanctuary, sea caves, flourishing coral reefs, exotic marine life, or limestone cliffs. You won’t regret traveling to Krabi to bask in the idyllic natural beauty of the tropical paradise.
Journey to the “last natural frontier” to uncover the unparalleled beauty of the Palawan Archipelago in the Philippines. From remote jungles and rugged landscapes to pristine beaches and diving reefs, this cluster of islands is begging for curious travelers to come and explore. Composed of over 1,700 islands and islets, you’ll never run out of new adventures in Palawan.
Step into the pages of history and visit the ancient city of Petra, Jordan. Carved into rose-colored rock cliffs, this UNESCO World Heritage Site will transport you back to a time when the “lost city” was alive and thriving. Even though Petra is one of the seven wonders of the world, it somehow escapes many people’s “must visit” list, and we are here to gently remind you that this location should be a non-negotiable in your future travel plans! Petra's unique blend of natural beauty and historical significance makes it an unforgettable destination.
Plitvice Lakes, Croatia
Located in the heart of Croatia, Plitvice Lakes National Park is a natural wonderland that will leave you in awe. With its cascading waterfalls, crystal-clear lakes, karst landscape, and lush greenery, Croatia’s largest national park offers a surreal and enchanting experience. Explore the network of wooden walkways and hiking trails that lead you through the park's diverse landscapes, and be prepared to witness nature's artwork at its finest.
Traveling is meant to inspire; each adventure should leave us both satiated and yearning for more. To capture some of nature’s wonder, we hope you consider adding a few of these unique destinations to your list. The world is your playground!